Still sunny in Salvador

Salvador da Bahia Travel Blog

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The slave holding area under the market.

28 August:
After another very nice brekky, we went with another chap from our group, Brian, down the funicular to the Mercado Modelo at the bottom of the main hill of Salvador.  The market is within the old customs building, and is now full of tourist tat stalls and a couple of restaurants.  The basement can be accessed for a look at the area where the slaves were held before being taken for sale - a horrible, wet, hot and close area that would have been a hell-hole.  From here we caught a taxi over to the Museum of Modern Art.  Upon arrival here, the security guard told us it would open at 1pm (it was now 12.15pm) so we decided to wait.  When 1pm came around, that guard had disappeared and the new one told us that the whole museum was closed for renovations!  Don´t bother coming here at the moment, because there´s nothing to see - mind you, plenty of taxi drivers were bringing people to the site, and then óffering´to wait and take them back for an extra fee!  As we were a group of 3 we decided to walk back, but probably not recommended if you´re on your own.

At the bottom of the big house from the Modern Art Museum, the tracks were for the little sugar cane trains.
  From what we could see the building looks interesting (an old sugar plantation and mill), so would be worth seeing once it re-opens.  We went back up to the old centre in the lift, which dates fro 1873 and costs 5 cents a trip for the 22 second journey.  Had lunch at a cheap per kilo which actually had some more unusual local dishes, then went over to the Golden Church (the Church and convent of St Francis).  The outside areas have very interesting tile murals and paintings, with lots of carved jacaranda in the internal areas.  The church itself certainly lives up to its name, with gold leaf as far as the eye can see!  We also saw more examples of the pregnant angels here, so must have some local significance that we haven´t yet discovered.
The public elevator from the port area to the old town, Salvador.
  There are more tile panels showing the life of St Francis and two sessions a day give visitors a sound and light show, although we´re not quite sure how that works!
Went back to the hotel for a lovely swim, then Noel went for a drink with some of the group.  Had a much better example of the fish stew, moqueca, tonight - Frank from our group suggested we are in the ´moqueca mecca´, and this restaurant certainly lived up to that.  Went to another place for a mashed coconut and sugar syrup dessert - delicious!

29 August:
Last day in Salvador.  Visited the city museum, for a closer look at some of the candomble costumes, the rest of the exhibits were fairly ordinary, although the dolls and ex-votos upstairs were quite interesting (ex-votos are the replica limbs that people leave in the churches if they want that part to be healed - you can see feet, legs, arms, even breasts hanging from the ceilings and walls!).

The chapter room of the St Francis Convent.
  Afterwards, back to the hotel for a quick shower before getting on the night bus to Recife and then Olinda (have vowed never to go on another night bus once this trip is over!!!).

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The slave holding area under the m…
The slave holding area under the …
At the bottom of the big house fro…
At the bottom of the big house fr…
The public elevator from the port …
The public elevator from the port…
The chapter room of the St Francis…
The chapter room of the St Franci…
The cloisters of the St Francis Ch…
The cloisters of the St Francis C…
Melissa with her coconuts!  These …
Melissa with her coconuts! These…
Our last view of Salvador, from th…
Our last view of Salvador, from t…